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Ukraine insists on territorial integrity as talks loom

Zelenskiy said in his video address to the Ukrainian people late on Sunday that in talks due to take place in Istanbul his government would prioritise the "territorial integrity" of Ukraine.

March 28, 2022 / 07:06 AM IST
With the sweet scent of spring in the air and barricades dotting the city, Ukraine's port of Odessa, known as the pearl of the Black Sea, is clinging to peace, but bracing itself for a Russian attack. (Image: AFP)

With the sweet scent of spring in the air and barricades dotting the city, Ukraine's port of Odessa, known as the pearl of the Black Sea, is clinging to peace, but bracing itself for a Russian attack. (Image: AFP)

With peace talks between Russia and Ukraine set to take place in Turkey this week, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy insisted on the territorial integrity of his country after earlier suggesting he was ready for a compromise.

Zelenskiy said in his video address to the Ukrainian people late on Sunday that in talks due to take place in Istanbul his government would prioritise the "territorial integrity" of Ukraine.

But in comments made to Russian journalists earlier in the day Zelenskiy adopted a different tone, saying Ukraine was willing to assume neutral status and compromise over the status of the eastern Donbas region as part of a peace deal.

In the video call that the Kremlin pre-emptively warned Russian media not to report, Zelenskiy said any agreement must be guaranteed by third parties and put to a referendum.